Higher NI contributions are not the way to address the UK’s social care crisis | Andrew Fisher

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Andrew Fisher

Guest
The Tories are more concerned with protecting property and inheritance for wealthy people than actually fixing the problem

  • Andrew Fisher was the Labour party’s executive director of policy from 2016 to 2019

For the Conservative right, nothing is as sacred as protecting the wealth of those who are already wealthy. This is why Boris Johnson, Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid have broken their party’s 2019 manifesto commitment not to raise national insurance (NI), and will introduce a “health and social care” levy funded through a 1.25% increase in NI contributions and a 1.25% increase in dividend tax, the result of which will be to protect the housing assets of those who end up needing social care.

In England, if you have assets of more than £23,250, you currently have to pay for your social care in full. Tens of thousands of people end up selling their homes in order to cover the costs of their care. Under the government’s new plans, those who have assets under £20,000 will pay nothing for their social care, while those with assets between £20,000 and £100,0000 will be eligible for means-tested support. The government has also introduced an £86,000 cap on care costs, which limits the amount anyone will pay for social care over their lifetime.

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